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How to Tune Up a Bicycle: What Should You Know about Transforming Your Bike?

how to tune up a bike

Express Your Uniqueness by Tuning a Bike

As all may know, true comfort means the attention to the details. Cycling, in this way, is no exception. When riding a bike, you want just to enjoy riding, but not to look for a place, where to put your bottle of water, or to worry about the phone safety while riding and in your mind to count the number of kilometers covered. To solve all these problems there are special accessories for bicycles.

That is the exact point where you start to think about how to tune up a bike. However, an important principle of bicycle tuning is not to make a lot of tuning. Firstly, it should not lose its technical characteristics and should become a better version than the original one. Secondly, it is not necessary to tune bicycle transport so that others openly laugh and be amazed by the crazy imagination of the bike owner. To avoid any mistakes when tuning a bicycle, it is worth knowing the basic principles/rules of how to do a bike tune up.

How to Tune Up a Bicycle?

tuning a bike

The term “tuning” comes from the world of cars and means improving vehicles. The purpose can be different – to increase comfort while riding, improve technical parameters, or appearance. But if the upgrade of the car without the help of professionals and special equipment is problematic, modifying the bike with their own hands – an easy task for the cyclist. The easiest option for tuning a bicycle is to paint its frame and wheels.

Bicycle Frame Tuning

To know how to tune up a bike at home, you should bear in mind that you need to do some preparation beforehand. The main types of equipment, which are needed:

  • primer;
  • sandpaper;
  • solvent;
  • spray cans with the chosen color of paint.

Step by step guidance of how to paint the frame at home:

  1. The frame is washed from dirt and dust, treated with a solvent. Carefully remove layers of old paint – you can use any amount of solvent in this process – most importantly, completely clean the part of the bike in question.
  2. Using sandpaper, the metal is sanded. In this way, all the defects on the frame are removed – micro-cracks, chips.
  3. Degreasing and drying the frame. This can also be done with a solvent, thoroughly treating even the deepest corners of this part of the bike – if the surface will not be degreased, the layer of new paint will not lay evenly.
  4. Priming the prepared frame. This is a mandatory step of the whole process because if there is no primer, the paint will not lay evenly on the metal and will soon lose its attractiveness. The primer should be applied in at least 3 layers, and each of them must be completely dry in natural conditions (you can not accelerate the process by using a construction fan, hair dryer or any other heating appliances).
  5. Painting the frame. Here everything is simple – from a can, the paint is sprayed on the prepared part of the bike. Just remember that this work must be done in a well-ventilated room.

Please note: once you have finished with the frame painting, wait at least 2-3 days and let the frame dry completely.

Once painted, you will forget about thoughts of how often to get a bike tune up, as the painted frame will attract attention for a long period of time. You can go further and use sticky templates, you can apply different symbols, images on the frame- that’s where you can express your individuality.

Wheels: Learn How to Do a Bike Tune-Up

how to do a bike tune up

This bicycle transformation can be done in several ways:

  • change the tires of the bike;
  • paint the wheel rims;
  • to cover the wheels with tape;
  • install plastic shields;
  • to put new wheels.

If you have decided to paint the wheels, then you should know that this process is done the same way as for the frame. The only peculiarity is to protect the spokes and hubs from getting paint. You can protect spokes with transparent film or duct tape.

Another type of tuning is the installation of new tires. You may install different models of bike tires, and make your own style of bike.

Tuning of the Bicycle Fork

This way of transformation is a purely technical modernization of this part of the bicycle, which involves:

  • installing a new spring on the fork;
  • changing the length of the fork;
  • modifying the fork into a rigid design;
  • installing a damper;
  • installation of shock absorbers.

Please bear in mind: tuning the fork of the bike is applicable for only those cyclists who ride bikes with cheap shock absorbers. If the bike has a modern and expensive fork of different types, then independent tuning experts categorically recommend not. In this case, it is better to think about how to lubricate and tune up a bike fork, as this part should be treated with special care.

Bicycle Tuning with the Lights

Cyclists, who enjoy riding a bike at night for sure will be interested in the possibility of knowing how to give your bike a tune up with lights. On the market, there is such a variety of lights for tuning, that you may turn your bike into a real Christmas tree. However, this tuning is hardly an indicator of good taste.

How to do a perfect light tuning for the bike:

  • install of a rear light and a front light;
  • highlight the wheels, frame and handlebars with diode strips;
  • light the phosphor type;
  • install the turn signals;
  • use of retroreflectors.

The most common of all lists use headlights and taillights – these tuning gears will provide not only the attractiveness and individuality of the bicycle but also will ensure safety of riding in the dark.

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